- Get extremely specific about what you are looking for. There is no demand for generalists. You can only be hired when you meet a known need
- Know how to introduce yourself in a few seconds
- Build target company list. What kind of company: size, location, product/service. Why?
- Build contact list
- Network with employed people
- Learn how to ask questions. Be helpful to others
- Marketing plan. Stories, messages, key points. Short and simple
- Business cards, networking document. How do you want to be remembered?
- Be reachable AND “findable.” Email, phone, mailing address. Be professional in all
- Message Templates
- Get some accountability
- Drop any hint of pride. Be willing to ask for help. Be coachable
- Only employed people can offer you a job. Plan to be where employed people are
- Get ready to work hard. Devote a minimum of 40 hours to the task. 60+ is more reasonable. Make sure you have a place to work
- Take care of family situations that will impact your search. Yes, that’s hard. Your spouse, or family, can be your greatest asset (your secret weapon). Or your saboteur. If your home life is “crazy,” it will destroy your search
- Systems: Contact Management. Filing. Follow-ups. Create organization, use it, no exceptions!
- Input. Be a reader (or audio program listener). Focus on attitude and Motivation. (QBQ! or Flipping the Switch, or How to Win Friends… are great starting places)
- Deal with finances, etc. Assume the worst — cut the costs
- Be sure you know who you are — assessments. Ask friends for your blind spots
- Close skills gaps
- Do NOT start with your resume
- Don’t start by begging everyone you know for a job
- Don’t badmouth your previous company, or manager, or anything else about your previous situation. No negatives!
- Don’t listen to the negative news
- Don’t hang around with family and friends who are generally negative. (Find people who think you are wonderful)
- Don’t mass market yourself before you have a clear plan
- Don’t dwell on the past. Be future focused. What can you do now, and in the future
- Don’t try our 1970 (or 80, or 90) job search approach. The world has changed. Get with it
- Don’t ignore any social media presence you may have. What you’d said will be uncovered. Make sure it’s all good stuff
- Don’t burn time. Don’t allow yourself to become comfortable being unemployed
Special thanks to Art Jones who named this the 9:40 document: 10, before 10, before 10:00.
Last updated: 9/30/2014
You can find all my Job-Search related articles here. Please remember, a job search is normally an ordered set of steps. If you try to skip steps, it usually doesn’t work out well.